Publisher Bruce Trogdon

If we learned anything lately it is that the Democratic Party is an absolute mess, according to columnist Charles Lane from that other Post (the little Washington one).

"The fault lines are deeper than ever 'between the young socialists' and the old establishment figures who run the place."

I would describe Lane as a moderate. Pretty much everybody at his newspaper hates Donald Trump, though, including the owner, Jeff Bezos (who also owns a little company called Amazon). So Lane's points rang true to me.

Over the holiday, I was discussing the Democratic debates with my son-in-law Brian. We are actually like two peas in a pod, except for politics. We both love to talk about issues, particularly with people that we do not always agree with. I use him as my liberal-leaning, millennial sounding board – whether he likes it or not!

A day after our discussion, I happened upon Lane's piece, which dovetailed with my own observations. So this column is dedicated to you, Brian!

To me, Joe Biden rocketed to the lead in the Democratic polls for one reason. Namely, the only thing uniting Democrats right now is the mutual disdain they feel for Donald Trump.

Not to put words in their mouths, but let's just say that neither Brian or Charles Lane are big Trump fans. I would liken myself more to the late Charles Krauthammer on the Trump question, who often agreed with Trump on the issues but couldn't tolerate him personally. Trump's boorish and erratic behavior just rubs even conservatives like me the wrong way.

The Dems need to chip away at such conservatives. They just need to snatch a few. Biden would be the logical candidate to help them win, on paper, but he performed terribly at the debate. Just didn't seem to have it anymore. If I was a Democrat, I would be very afraid to put all my eggs in that basket.

How about Kamela Harris, who beat Biden like a drum in the debate? My take and Lane's was that Harris sounded too scripted. The days following the debate, that became even more obvious. Harris "scored" by hitting hard on Biden for opposing federally-mandated busing. Oldsters like me remember that busing was not particularly popular with about anybody at the time. Harris emotionally supported the federal mandates at the debate.

A few days later, Harris backed away from federal mandates. Instead, she flopped to much the same position as Biden – that states and school districts should make decisions. Scripted. She also flopped on Medicare for all, saying on stage that she would eliminate all private insurance and then, the next day, said she wouldn’t. Harris told the liberal debate audience what they wanted to hear until her advisers swooped in with polling data that showed her the political reality of her positions.

The one thing that people find appealing about Trump is that he is not afraid to make decisions that run afoul of popular passions. About all that Harris proved is that she can "rhetorically bludgeon an old white male in front of a camera and not think twice about it," commented Lane.

To both me and Lane, the Democrats in the debate are being pushed way too far leftward – like health care for illegal immigrants when many of us Americans who do not work for the government can't even afford our own. And did you notice how each one would slowly look around the room and then raise their hands in lockstep? Not a good look.

Lane closed his argument pointing out that the Trump campaign has banked huge sums for his re-election effort and just scored the highest approval rating of his presidency (47 percent) in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll. Better yet for Trump, 54 percent of respondents would consider voting for Trump against any Democrat that was tagged as a socialist.

"As Democrats push their presidential candidates further to the left, the American economy continues to bounce and cracks emerge in Pelosi’s makeshift socialist dam, Trump’s chances for re-election are getting better every day" said Lane.

Do you agree? Vote in our weekly online Post reader poll: "Did the Democrat debate make you more or less likely to vote for Trump?"

(1) comment

NowayJose

You state that you agree with Trump on the issues but can't tolerate him personally. You state, "Trump's boorish and erratic behavior just rubs even conservatives like me the wrong way." When does a persons terrible character outweigh their stance on issues? I feel for most of the GOP base, that line is really far out there. His behavior is more than boorish and erratic. He is a liar and a racist. The events that have happened since you wrote this article, (I am referencing the Trump rally where the "send them back" chants started), are way over the line, and are undeniably racist comments that should be condemned by all members of both parties. You dish on Harris for flip flopping at the democratic debate in reference to an actual issue. I would like to see your written opinion about Trump's very insincere flip flop on rebuking the "send them back" chants, after he clearly was promoting it at his rally. He started this with his tweets, condoned it, takes heat from some members in his party and now condemns the action? C'mon man. We are past talking about "the issues". We have a serious divider in chief at the helm, and we need to figure out how to unite our divided country again. Anything shy of full condemnation of tRump is the same as an endorsement at this stage. You may think you are safely straddling the fence (or wall if you'd prefer), but you clearly have two legs swung over on the tRump side. Does this mean you are ok with a little bit of racism? A little bit of sexism? Is truth over-rated? (dangerous realm to be in as a newsman) A touch of xenophobia is natural and ok? Trying to take the stance of "I can't stand him personally, but I agree with his policies" isn't going to fly anymore when the character of the person is that bad. You should be at the point where you just acknowledge what he is and bail, or you acknowledge what he is and self admit what you must be too. As someone in business told me once, you can't be a little bit pregnant. You are or you aren't. Show your true colors and commit to a side.

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